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OperaSoc Presents: Bernstein and Berkeley

A project by: Helen Southernwood

pledged of £530 target

This project did not reach its target.

Completion Date: Wed 15 Jan 2020
OperaSoc's 2020 Production: 'Trouble In Tahiti' and 'A Dinner Engagement'

Opera Society Presents: Bernstein AND BERKELEY

The Opera Society are looking with your help to put on a double bill of Bernstein's 'Trouble In Tahiti' and Berkeley's 'A Dinner Engagement'. The production will be taking place at the end of January 2020 at The John Cooper Studio Monkgate, York.

Who will be involved?

The Opera Society is there for anyone in the University of York who loves watching, singing, or just being a part of Opera! We are holding a relaxed audition process for this particular production, so we can create something very special.


We on the production team feel that Opera is a truly unique art form, with nothing else being able to compare to the grandeur and the incredibly varied music. We really hope we have the opportunity to show the audience and people of York our passion and drive for performing. With your financial contributions we hope to add to this production.

'Trouble in Tahiti' and 'A Dinner Engagement' pair beautifully, a heart-breaking story of a dysfunctional husband and wife, followed by a highly comic farce of another husband and wife trying to marry off their stubborn daughter!

Here are some words from Imogen Wood, the director for Bernstein's 'Trouble in Tahiti' as well as the Opera Society President :

"This opera is definitely going to be an amazing experience for all involved, mo matter whether you are a producer, cast member, costume designer, or an audience member. This production is going to be the first stepping stone for the society as we start a new academic year. We want to do this production not only to entertain an audience, but also to allow the public to be a part of our society. Raising money for this production will not only provide entertainment to an audience for a few nights, but will allow us as a student society to carry on bringing the power of opera to the university and the city of York."

Darcy Thorpe, the Treasurer for the society:

"Personally, Opera is all I want to do. Opportunities for young singers wanting to gain experience in the operatic field are rare due to the time required for all of the necessary training. Opera Soc's upcoming double bill is wonderfully accessible and a great way to get endlessly beneficial experience. People always assume Opera as an artform is dying, or reserved for the older generations. I do not believe this to be true, nor should it ever be the case. Opera can be alive and fresh and this production is one way of ensuring the music and performers are where they belong - on stage."

Helen Southernwood, who is producing the upcoming show:

"I love to be able to throw myself into projects of any nature. Opera Soc has now given me the chance to gain experience in producing a show, which is never something I had previously considered. It has been 2 months since I joined the project and I am looking forward to it being a success and a production Opera Soc can grow from. One of the joys about musically more generally is the collaborative nature of anything. Opera definitely encompasses that with, movement, singing and acting all being key elements of the performance, but there are also all the aspects that as an audience member you don't see; which all affect the magic onstage. They to me are much more fascinating"

As can be seen by the comments of some of the people involved with the production, everyone involved with the production on every level, are committed to at least one thing: Opera is important, and deserves every opportunity possible to be performed. With your help we can continue to do this.

Where will the money go?

For this production we plan on having many various fundraising events running parallel to this YuStart Crowdfund. This target of £530 represents what we hope will cover the costs of all of our printed publicity and our props and set. These numbers would be subject to some change, but this figure also allows for some flexibility. Any extra funds would hopefully if our other events are successful would be able to provide the beginnings of an 'unexpected costs + 10%' fund so that we would be equipped to deal with any unforeseen problems that arise closer to the production's dates in January 2020.

Ideally with the production happening in now under 4 months, an update will be given at the beginning of December with information of all the fundraising we have done throughout the winter term. An update would also be given before the beginning of the production week and performances at the end of January, and one after the end of the production's run in the beginning of February which would also include all of the ticket takings.

Here is a breakdown of some of the numbers:

  • Comparing various online printing services, an average cost for posters, flyers and programmes in the style we would want and enabling us to input our own designs is £140 plus postage. Therefore, allowing a margin of £20 to cover postage and shipping, the total cost of all of our printed publicity would be £160. 
  • Given that both of the operas require a minimal set, we are hoping that the budget for Set, Props and Costumes can be limited to £300.

These pre-emptive figures give a total of £460, and already allows for a £70 margin, which as a percentage is 15% of the estimated total.


Rewards will include shoutouts on social media, posters or programmes signed by the cast and cast meet and greets after the performances.

Find us here

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to be kept up to date with everything the production are up to, in terms of rehearsals but also fundraising!

Help us succeed!

You don't need to give money to help us succeed! Please share this project with anyone you think would support us – on Facebook, Instagram, by email, telephone and word of mouth!

In fact, share it with everyone you know as we think it's a great idea, and the more people who know about it, the more likely we are to make this work out brilliantly.

And we know we said you don't need to give money to help us, but we'd love it if you did! Please sponsor us and help make this happen.